Affordable prices draw home-buyers to smaller towns

by Krizzel Canlas13 Aug 2018

Home values in Kawerau, a small town of 6800 people, have soared by 27.1% over the past year, the latest report from analytics firm CoreLogic has revealed.

According to CoreLogic, values in Kawerau grew from $181,353 one year ago to $230,500 currently. This was the highest jump in the country ahead of Wairarapa town Featherson and Invercargill suburb Clifton, where home values rose 22.1% and 20.6% respectively.

Kawerau Mayor Malcolm Campbell said the burst of activity in the town’s housing market was a breath of fresh air. Retirees from Auckland and Tauranga had been moving into town recently, drawn by the affordable prices.

“Those newbies coming into town is where the real positive stuff is happening, and there is quite a big expansion forecast for the next 12 months-to-two years also,” he said.  “We are possibly looking at 1000 new jobs in the area.”

CoreLogic highlighted that Kawerau’s growth indicates the best finds for buyers chasing capital gains may now be the smaller towns rather than cities.

“Being brutally frank, the prices had to go up, we were that cheap it was ridiculous,” Campbell stated.

The Auckland and Christchurch markets, meanwhile, were home to all 10 of the country’s worst performing markets. Home values in Parau fell 5.7% from $867,338 to $817,900 currently, while values in Laingholm drop 5.3% from $855,280 to $809,950.

“Affordability is clearly a problem across Auckland,” said CoreLogic research analyst Kelvin Davidson.


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